ERIC Number: ED440510
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2000-Jan
Reference Count: N/A
Diploma Options and Graduation Policies for Students with Disabilities.
Thurlow, Martha; Thompson, Sandra
NCEO Policy Directions, n10 Jan 2000
This paper identifies issues to consider as educational policy makers make decisions about diploma options and graduation policies for students with disabilities, especially in the context of the increasing use of requirements that students pass specified tests to graduate. A table compares advantages and disadvantages of four diploma options: (1) standard diploma or better (single criteria); (2) standard diploma or better (multiple criteria); (3) certificate options; and (4) special education diploma. The paper then considers the use of special options for some students and identifies the related issues of non-approved accommodations and the phase-in approach. The following sections discuss requirements for different diploma options, the availability of re-testing opportunities, and the need for dropout prevention policies and an appeals process. Suggestions for inclusive and fair diploma options and graduation policies include the following: have the same diploma options available to all students; recognize that not all students demonstrate high-level knowledge and skills in the same way; give names to diploma options that correspond to the knowledge and skills demonstrated by the student; clarify the implications of different diploma options for continued special education services; get input from stakeholder groups about diploma options and policies; and use the media to explain diploma options to the public. (DB)
Descriptors: Academic Accommodations (Disabilities), Academic Standards, Decision Making, Degrees (Academic), Disabilities, Dropout Prevention, Educational Policy, Graduation Requirements, High School Graduates, High Schools, Testing Accommodations
NCEO Publications Office, 350 Elliott Hall, 75 E. River Road, Minneapolis, MN 55455 ($3.50). Tel: 612-624-8561; Fax: 612-624-0879; Web site: http://www.coled.umn.edu/nceo.
Publication Type: Collected Works - Serials; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Special Education Programs (ED/OSERS), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: National Center on Educational Outcomes, Minneapolis, MN.
Note: The Center represents a collaborative effort of the University of Minnesota, the Council of Chief State School Officers, and the National Association of State Directors of Special Education.